Can a new Las Vegas casino threaten Caesars, MGM’s Strip empires?
When people think of Las Vegas, the Las Vegas Strip immediately comes to mind. It makes sense because this roughly four-mile stretch of road contains an epic array of properties ranging from the Grandeur of Caesars Palace (CZR) – Get the report from Caesars Entertainment Inc. and the modern-chic Venetian of The Cosmopolitan and MGM Grand (MGM) – Get MGM Resorts International Reportand heavily themed properties like Caesars Paris, MGM’s New York New York and MGM’s Pyramids of Luxor.
The Strip, of course, keeps changing. Caesars will turn its Bally’s property into its Horsehoe brand because Bally’s Corporation (BALY) – Get Bally’s Corporate Report bought the Tropicana, intending to demolish it to build a self-proclaimed hotel/casino. And, of course, Hard Rock International purchased The Mirage from MGM and it will topple the property’s iconic volcano in order to build its signature guitar hotel.
Along with all of these changes, the highly anticipated Resorts World Las Vegas opened on the Strip during the pandemic and the decades-delayed Fontainebleau Las Vegas looks set to open in 2023.
It makes it seem like the future of Las Vegas is on the Strip, but what if it isn’t and another part of the city, downtown Las Vegas, – an area where neither Caesars nor MGM owns any property – is ready to play for its share of tourist dollars.
Welcome to Downtown Las Vegas
Although the Las Vegas Strip is a mixture of glamor and spunk, it’s best known for its high-profile properties. Downtown Las Vegas, centered around Fulton St., is known for its more old-school experience.
Hotels like the Golden Nugget and Binion’s offer a more classic Las Vegas experience with cheap shrimp cocktail, cut-price steaks, and a mix of vintage waitresses and younger waitresses in more provocative waitresses.
These casinos (and other similar downtown properties) sit on Fulton St., which has a canopy full of lights that provide the over-the-top Fulton St. Experience after dark. Throw in lots of live music, people ziplining in the sky, and a mix of oddities, including showgirls, Elmo, Optimus Prime, PAW Patrol, and a cast of somewhat desperate (and sometimes poorly done) characters looking to pose. for a photo for money.
It’s a fascinating scene, but decidedly low-end compared to what Caesars, MGM and others offer on The Strip. It’s something that Derek Stevens. and his brother Greg, hope to change with the new downtown property, Circa.
Can Circa bring high end to downtown Las Vegas?
Circa, which opened its first tower in October 2020, mixes an old-school Las Vegas atmosphere with new-school luxury. The property features a one-of-a-kind tiered pool, Stadium Swim, sports betting — a truly unique site to see — as well as a mix of upscale restaurants and cocktail bars.
The property opened its second tower in December 2020 and Derek Stevens made his goal clear in his comments in the launch press release.
“They say save the best for last, and when you see our hotel tower and our Legacy Club, you’ll see that’s exactly what we did,” said Circa CEO Derek Stevens. “Circa is now home to some of the most stunning hotel rooms and suites in the entire city and watching Las Vegas light up before your eyes from the Legacy Club is one of those ‘wow’ moments you have to experience for yourself- same.”
Stevens, owner of Golden Gate and D, both on Fremont St., felt the time was right for a modern, billion-dollar property downtown.
“I was lucky. I was able to buy the Golden Gate 15 years ago, then I bought Fitzgerald’s and turned it into The D,” he told the Las Vegas Review- Newspaper. “I always thought the number of people who would come to Fremont Street, who enjoyed Fremont Street, I always thought there was room to have a new product here. And what we really tried to to do here is to create a resort with a number of attractions, such as Stadium Swim and the largest sports betting site in the world.”
Stevens, who told the newspaper he has no plans to buy or build property on the Strip (although he admits things could change), thinks a simple philosophy can attract people to his downtown Las Vegas properties.
“Every customer that walks through those doors, let’s be grateful that they’re willing to give us 48 hours of their life or 72 hours of their life. The fact that someone from Columbus or someone from Atlanta, or someone from Salt Lake City is eager to spend their weekend here or potentially even a few hours here, let’s be respectful. If they give us their time, it’s our responsibility to give them the time of their lives,” he said. -he declares.